Up until this point, it has been a relatively fun spring training for Yankees fans.
Gary Sánchez looks good. Jameson Taillon, Corey Kluber, Jordan Montgomery, Deivi Garcia, and Domingo German all have looked good and healthy in their outings.
Yesterday was the first bad day with the news of Zack Britton needing elbow surgery to remove a bone chip.
Britton is a ground ball machine due to his nasty sinker ball and one of the three horsemen in the bullpen for the Yankees, so that he will be missed for however long he will be out.
I appreciate the support from everyone. We all have daily challenges we have to overcome in order to reach our goals. Just have to keep pushing ahead! I will get this taken care of during the upcoming week and be back as soon as I can.
— Zack Britton (@zbritton) March 9, 2021
Gio Urshela also had a bone spur, which is usually worse than a chip removed in the offseason, and he had a recovery time of three months. Britton’s recovery time could be different depending on the size of the chip and how careful the Yankees want to be.
It is also important to recognize that it is early in the season. If this bone chip had been discovered in September, maybe there is a chance that he pitches through it, and the Yankees wait until the offseason to have the procedure done.
So it is a good thing that Britton will be fully healthy for the long haul once he is back, and it should not be an injury that causes the Yankees to have a bad start to the year.
It will be an unusual scene in the bullpen on opening day when Britton is not there, and Aroldis Chapman is serving a two-game suspension for throwing in the area of Mike Brosseau’s head last season. Despite this, the Yankees have the arms to make it work.
Chapman will be out for only two games, which will not make a huge difference in the season. Chad Green is still a shutdown reliever. After that, the Yankees still have new signings Darren O’Day and Justin Wilson, who are solid arms out of the pen. Jonathan Loaisiga and Luis Cessa are not great pitchers by any means but fine for their roles.
Also, there is Albert Abreu, who is someone with some upside who could make the roster.
The Yankees spent this offseason adding depth to the bullpen. Although Britton missing time is disappointing, and I know Yankees fans will worry about a wave of injuries coming. Still, this one injury is something they can easily overcome.
Let’s worry about other injuries when and if they happen.
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